Mystery & Narrative at SLATE Contemporary Art in Oakland, CA / by Monique Crine

I am thrilled to participate in a group show at SLATE Gallery in Oakland, CA. Details are as follows: 

Per the press release:

Denver artist Monique Crine’s work as a painter is deeply informed by her work as a photographer. On first glance, her paintings give the illusion of the photographs that they are a reference to; but upon closer examination, the subtle brushwork and unique texture of oil on canvas reveals the object’s true identity. This revelation gives a special weight to her scenes, and calls upon us as viewers to question what it means to us that this object before us is a painting rather than a photograph, and could have been invented rather than having the photographic aura of ‘reality.’

The portraits that Crine creates, first in extended photography shoots with her subjects and then on the canvas, are steeped in narrative, informed by mid- twentieth century cinema, film noir, and current media styles. Cheryl, (from Crine’s Burlwood series of familial women), vibrates with drama — from the pained expression the subject is wearing, to the high contrast shadows that shroud her, to the over-the-top vintage movie poster that the subject seems to emerge from: “SHE GAVE HER SOUL TO SAVE A LIFE!.”

Rob (II) (from Crine’s most recent Eden Prairie series of portraits of professional football players), is similarly posed and composed, but this subject is more guarded behind thick panes of glass that mostly obscure his form and a stubbornly sealed expression. Both portraits offer explorations of archetypes as they play out in the spectrum from fictionalized spectacle to ‘real’ life, as well drawing our attention to the importance of medium to convey a message.